Master of Plagues - Dewey B. Reynolds I try not to DNF books. Part of me always feels like I have been defeated by an abominable foe when I do not finish a book. I become driven to continue, to keep reading no matter what – literature will not defeat me!Alas, sometimes it happens. But usually I fight the good fight for a long time before putting down the book, and this was no exceptionThe problem was this book came out swinging. Within the first 10 pages the book launched its first assault on my brain and it didn’t stop. Never did I think a book would lay siege to my tolerance for even the worst hacked together writing so early on. I should probably have put the book down right then and written it off as a book I simply could not read. But I wasn’t one to quit the field of battle without at least trying to fight!By page 25 it was clear I was losing, my meagre defences were falling, I was putting the book down every other page to gape in shock at the atrocities perpetrated on the page. I had so many notes I think I had written more than the authorOne page 50 I was well and truly defeated only momentum and a kind of stunned disbelief kept me going20 pages later, I admitted defeat, I could not read one more page of this book. Raise the white flag, the writing had killed me.And it was the writing. I have only actually come across one book that had worse writing – and I’m pretty certain that was written by a non-native speaker whose English was very poor.We open with a group of 8 university students playing a wicked prank on the protagonist. This prank takes 3 chapters of the most painfully long writing imaginable. Every one of the 8 pranksters is described at pointless length. They each discuss the prank, then repeat the discussion, then repeat it again, then again and then yet another time. For some bemusing reason each one decides to tell the other what their phobias are (rats, snakes, bats, hurricanes, bees, ants, tornadoes, sharks).Here is a sample of the scintillating dialogue:“This very room gives me the creeps. In case you didn’t know, rats, especially the really big ones, drive me nuts. I just saw one with big glowing eyes.”“You’re from New York city, Anthony. New Yorkers can’t help by have a big fear of rats. They’ll bite a whole into you the size of the Grand Canyon.”“You’re right, Prudence. Us New Yorkers know about big rats.”“I take it that big rats are your biggest fear, like your number one phobia.”“Yes they are!” Anthony spoke with a tremor.“Know what my biggest phobia is?”“Tell me.”“Bats!” Prudence detestedAnthony ceased from his brief tremor. He couldn’t believe what his ears had absorbed. “Did I hear you say that bats were your biggest phobia?”“Yes,” Prudence rectified.“Guess bat and rats can both be creepy”Read More